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St. Lawrence Parks Commission Celebrates Grand Reopening of Revitalized Brown’s Bay Beach and Picnic Area

New park infrastructure offers accessibility and inclusion features for enhanced guest experience

Mallorytown, ON – The patio is set, the perched beach is ready for sandcastles, the accessible water access points beckon and now, the ribbon has been cut. Though guests have been enjoying the newly renovated park for a few months already, Brown’s Bay Beach and Picnic Area has now been declared officially open. The honours were conducted this morning at a grand re-opening ceremony, celebrating St. Lawrence Parks Commission (SLPC’s) oldest and most iconic park, and marking the first of SLPC’s major capital revitalization commitments.

Led by The Honourable Bob Runciman, Chair of the St. Lawrence Parks Commission, the re-opening ceremony also included remarks from local MPP Steve Clark, Mayor of Front of Yonge Township, Roger Haley and CEO and General Manager of St. Lawrence Parks Commission, Hollee Kew.

The completed revitalization project brings a beautiful new bayfront building to Brown’s Bay Beach and Picnic Area, with areas for food and beverage service, changing rooms, and comfort stations. Additionally, it includes a water fountain and water bottle refill station, as well as a new seating and picnic area with a shade sail near the playground. Outdoor showers are provided on both the east and west sides of the building, near the entrances.

Construction included restoring a portion of the seawall, which created a perched beach area. The elevated perched beach is an investment in more sustainable operations, as the design will prevent shoreline erosion. Additionally, a new and improved modern septic system was installed, ensuring increased protection of the water quality of the St. Lawrence River while providing necessary and sustainable wastewater management for the site.

The entire project was designed and constructed with inclusion and accessibility at the forefront. The gender-neutral washrooms and change rooms are fully accessible with two wheelchair accessible washrooms and an additional universal washroom, which includes a fully powered adult care/change table. At the perched beach area, two new barrier-free entry ramps into the water have been added at the shoreline. The changing and shower areas feature wudu washing stations, providing a clean and tidy space for ritual cleansing before prayer.

In all, the new infrastructure makes Brown’s Bay Park more welcoming and easier to enjoy for everyone, while improving the look and function of the facilities and bringing them up to today’s standards.

The multi-year Brown’s Bay revitalization represents a key investment in Brown’s Bay infrastructure and future sustainability. Funded through significant investment by the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport (MTCS) Capital Repair and Rehabilitation (R&R) program, and bolstered by the St. Lawrence Parks Commission (SLPC)’s Internally Restricted Reserve, this investment will help encourage and reinvigorate tourism in Eastern Ontario.

Brown’s Bay is the first SLPC beach to undergo revitalization, as part of planned upgrades to all parks, fulfilling strategic objectives set out in SLPC’s strategic plan, Strengthening our Foundation for a Sustainable Future (2021-2026).

The grand re-opening celebration continues all weekend, with free admission for all from June 14 to 16, 2024. Brown’s Bay is currently open daily for the 2024 season until September 22. Season passes are available; visit parks.on.ca/membership-pass/ for more information. The park also features 14 campsites, including 10 premium waterfront sites, which can be booked at stlawrenceparks.com/reservations.

Quotes

“We are excited to celebrate the grand re-opening of Brown’s Bay Beach and Picnic Area, a testament to St. Lawrence Parks Commission’s commitment to enhancing and sustaining our beautiful parks and a significant milestone in fulfilling our strategic plan. These upgrades will offer an improved and welcoming environment for both our local community and visitors, boosting local tourism and benefiting the local economy. We look forward to seeing families and friends enjoy this revitalized park for many years to come.”

– Honourable Bob Runciman | Chair of the St. Lawrence Parks Commission, former Ontario Senator, former Member of Provincial Parliament of Ontario

“Brown’s Bay Beach and Picnic Area is one of the most beloved places for families and friends to gather among the Thousand Islands, and the St. Lawrence Parks Commission has shown extraordinary vision and leadership in its revitalization. The Government of Ontario is proud to have provided the support needed to ensure that Brown’s Bay Beach and Picnic Area continues to contribute to the local economy and remains a safe, family-friendly outdoor destination that residents and tourists can enjoy for generations to come.”

— Honourable Stan Cho | Ontario’s Minister of Tourism, Culture and Gaming

“I’m thrilled to help mark the reopening of Brown’s Bay Beach and Picnic Area and excited for the community to experience the expansive improvements from the investment by our government and the St. Lawrence Parks Commission,” said Steve Clark, MPP for Leeds—Grenville—Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes. “For generations, Brown’s Bay has been a showcase for the Thousand Islands. The expanded beach and new amenities now ensure people of all ages and abilities can enjoy the beautiful St. Lawrence River. I have no doubt it will attract families from across Ontario and beyond to make lasting memories and support our local tourism economy.”

— Member of Provincial Parliament Steve Clark | Member of Provincial Parliament for Leeds-Grenville-Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes

“We are very pleased with the renovations that have been done at Brown’s Bay. The Township has limited access to the waterfront and Brown’s Bay is such an important asset.”

— Mayor Roger Haley | Mayor of the Township of Front of Yonge

Read more: Project History and Updates


About St. Lawrence Parks Commission
The St. Lawrence Parks Commission, an agency of the Government of Ontario, operates facilities stretching from Kingston to the Quebec border, including Upper Canada Village, Fort Henry National Historic Site of Canada (and a UNESCO World Heritage Site); Kingston Pen Tours, Crysler Park Marina, Upper Canada Golf Course, Upper Canada Migratory Bird Sanctuary and 10 campgrounds and 6 beach day-use picnic areas including the Long Sault and Thousand Islands Parkways.

To learn more, visit www.parks.on.ca


Media Contact

Amanda Liebeck
Communications and Media Relations
St. Lawrence Parks Commission


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